Instructor for this course

Concepts for an accounting top down risk assessment can be well defined, but execution of a true top-down risk accounting risk assessment is still a challenge. The requirement of Auditing Standard 5 (AS5) to consider multiple risk factors complicates the process.  Organizations will often struggle with the best method to properly evaluate their accounts to determine those which present the potential for a material misstatement.

This course focuses on the methodology steps reviewed in Segment One of developing a top-down risk assessment.  We delve further into understanding how to examine entity-level controls and their importance on determining account significance.  We review the steps outlined in Segment One and apply those steps towards two separate scenarios.  This allows the participant to think through the process and application and to examine how a scoring methodology may be beneficial within their individual process.

Learning Objectives

  • Explore the key steps of a top down Risk Assessment (RA)
    • Assessing entity level controls
    • Determining significant accounts
    • Linking to assertions
    • Identifying related controls for significant accounts
    • Linking to Committee of Sponsoring Organizations (COSO) principles
  • Explore real world examples of executing a top down Risk Assessment
    • ABC Construction
    • Acme Inc.
Last updated/reviewed: October 24, 2018

Included In Certifications

This course is included in the following Certification Programs:

16 CoursesSarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Certification

  1. Sarbanes Oxley (SOX) Overview
  2. SOX: Authoritative Bodies
  3. The Evolution of Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Auditing Standards
  4. Information Technology in Today’s Digital World: General Controls Primer
  5. COSO 2013 Framework Requirements and Implementation Overview
  6. Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Section 404
  7. Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Section 302: Internal Controls over Financial Reporting
  8. Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Section 806, 902, 906
  9. Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX): Preparing for a Top Down Risk Assessment Part 1
  10. Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX): Executing a Top Down Risk Assessment Part 2
  11. Sarbanes Oxley (SOX): Entity Level and Soft Controls
  12. Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Identifying and Documenting Controls
  13. Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Testing
  14. Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) General Controls, Applications Controls, and Spreadsheet Controls
  15. Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Difficulty of Assessing Material Impact
  16. XBRL - Connection to SOX 302/404 and Critical Roles

15 Reviews (36 ratings)Reviews

Anonymous Author
I feel the course was helpful in understanding the concepts. The examples provided were very useful; however, the parts of course felt very repetitive, as a chunk of the material was a repeat of part 1. I feel it would have been better if less time had been spent going over previously covered material and more focus had been placed on the two examples provided.
Anonymous Author
The course is very helpful in working through two examples of top down risk assessments which makes it easier to understand the concepts of weighting various elements as per AS5 and then risk scoring against significant accounts.
Anonymous Author
Anither excellent course from Lynn Fountain - informative and easily digestable! Content was appropriate for internal or external audit professionals and provided with a very practical and hands-on approach.
Member's Profile
The course was helpful in understanding the concepts. The examples provided were relevant and helped to understand the concepts more fully.
Anonymous Author
Wish less time had been spent going over previously covered material and the two examples had been further developed and emphasized.
Anonymous Author
The examples provided really help in understanding the concepts and learning how to apply them.
Member's Profile
I would have liked to have more examples and some of the stuff was same as covered in part 1.
Member's Profile
Seems some of this info was covered in the prior section - could probably combine into one.
Member's Profile
Overall good course demonstrating simple top-down risk assessment principles and examples.
Member's Profile
Good course but I could not connect properly to part 1 as it repeats some of its concepts.
Member's Profile
I feel as though the course was a repeat of part 1, charts and information was the same.
Anonymous Author
More examples on explaining how the top down risk assessment is implemented were needed
Member's Profile
It builds on Part 1 which I believe should be taken first.
Anonymous Author
Very informative. Builds nicely off part1.
Member's Profile


Course Complexity: Advanced

No advanced preparation or prerequisites are required for this course, but completion of the other courses in this series will be helpful.

Education Provider Information

Illumeo, Inc., 75 East Santa Clara St., Suite 1215, San Jose, CA 95113
For more information regarding this course, including complaint and cancellation policies, please contact our offices at (408) 400- 3993 or send an e-mail to .
Course Syllabus
  4:12Introduction to Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX): Executing a Top Down Risk Assessment
Executing a Top Down Risk Assessment
  5:58Key Steps
  16:20Evaluating ELCS
  5:10Significant Financial Reporting Elements
  8:10Linking Assertions
  7:18Linking to Coso Principles
  7:11Example One
  5:23Scoring Example
  11:12Example 2
  6:02Course Summary
Continuous Play
  1:24:42Sarbanes-Oxley – Executing a Top Down RA Part 2
  PDFSlides: Executing a Top Down Risk Assessment Part 2
  PDFExecuting a Top Down Risk Assessment Part 2 Glossary/Index